Monday, December 5, 2011

Our Weather Event

It has been an odd few days.  On Wednesday night, we had what is being referred to as a "weather event". Some very high winds came through, like 80-90 mph, all during the night. I could hear the palm trees rattling, but it didn't disturb me unduly. When I got up Thursday morning, it was clear that the winds had created some major consequences. Many, many trees had been torn apart limb from limb or uprooted altogether. Transformers had been knocked out, power lines were down. The whole San Gabriel Valley was quite a mess. 

I never lost power, but all over the place schools were closed. I have had kids in school for over 20 years and we've never had school cancelled unexpectedly. We don't have snow days here! Anyway, no school for Handsome Lad. I hadn't heard anything from work, so I headed in. It took me 70 minutes to drive the 12 miles. There was so much debris in the street and most of the traffic lights were not functional. When I got to work, I found that there was no power. 

We sat around for a couple of hours, and finally the decision was made to send everyone home.  Those of us scheduled to work the next day (Friday) were told not to come in unless we were called. Keeping up on Nixle, I knew power hadn't been restored.  So...I ended up with two extra days off, paid!  Plus, of course, the weekend.  Handsome Lad and his family spent Friday night with me, as they had lost power too. Fortunately for them, theirs was restored early Saturday.  My mom had lost power too, but the property owners had a generator! She was fortunate and was able to stay home snug.

When I went in to work this morning, I knew that there was still no electricity in the library.  I was hoping they'd send us home quick. However, they were probably sick of paying us for not working. We were told if we wanted to leave, we could take vacation time, otherwise we should find some sort of little project to work on...and maybe the power would come back on at some point.  Bah.  So we worked in the cold, dark building...mostly shifting books and straightening shelves. Always stuff that needs to be done, but tedious in the dark! They did finally let us go about 4:00, when it started to be become too dark even to work near windows.  Towards the end of the day, they also brought by a HUGE generator.  So, by the time I go in at noon tomorrow, maybe we will have some sort of power.

They have told us we cannot open to the public until we are fully functional. Meaning we have to have enough to juice, not only for lights, but the servers and such must all be up and running. I hope we can return to business as usual. The old people that come every day were lingering around the door this morning, probably unsure of where they'd spend their long day. After school the kids were all around the building...because the library is where they go! I loved having extra time off, I can't deny it. But since now they are going to make us linger in the building no matter what, I really, really hope they can get us functional.



secret agent woman said...

So many freakish "weather events" the past couple of years. When I called about getting an estimate on my roof they wanted to know which of the hail storms had damaged it. We never get hail storms like that.

Hope your power is back soon!

3GKnight said...

Whoa! Glad no one was hurt and the kiddos got an adventure.

silly rabbit said...

Wow! You sure can't run a library these days without power. Busy work like that is no fun at all, especially in the cold and dark! I hope you are up and running soon.

NoRegrets said...

I was so glad that wasn't your car! They should hand out headlamps so you can work. Ha!
And a somewhat sad commentary about the poor older people with nowhere to go. :-(

MrManuel said...

I have a buddy who works for the electric company down there and he has been working INSANE hours. Like 75 hours the first 4 days after the storm. Crazy!

laura b. said...

Secret: Hail! We don't see that too often here, that's for sure. I bet that could do some serious damage.

3GK: Thank you. My son surely did enjoy a free day :)

Silly: We truly can't function without power. It was so unfortunate, as people were coming to us as a refuge from their powerless homes.

NoRegrets: That is exactly what I needed...a miner's helmet!
Things like this really do make us realize how much the community depends on us as a place to just BE, if nothing else :)

MrManuel: I can't even imagine how hard those crews have been working. And there was so much coordination involved between the electric people and the tree people...lots of tangles.

Churlita said...

Weird - for you guys. We have stuff like that in Iowa all of the time. Weather EVent sounds so much nicer than a tornado or straight line winds, though.

laura b. said...

Churlita: Yeah! We don't really do "weather" around here...and I can't say we handle it all that well :)